CEC History

About the Citizens’ Environmental Coalition

The Citizens’ Environmental Coalition is an alliance of diverse nonprofit, governmental, and educational organizations whose activities impact our environment and quality of life in the Houston-Galveston area. Our approximately 100 member organizations cover a broad spectrum, including professional associations, conservation groups, and activists.

The Citizens’ Environmental Coalition was founded in 1971 by an outstanding group of women who were proactive in the environmental causes of the day. They successfully lobbied for many quality of life issues. They saved Buffalo Bayou from being straightened and lined with concrete, they created a nature center at Armand Bayou, and they built safe places to ride bicycles – just to name a few accomplishments. These visionary women saw that there was a real need for all the local environmental groups to communicate with each other, to coordinate their efforts, and to support each other. They created the CEC to serve that need.

Originally, the Coalition published a joint calendar listing the activities of member groups in order to avoid conflicting events and duplication of programs. Soon the annual Environmental Resource Guide was born, an answering service was established, and community forums were organized.

CEC’s archives are housed in two locations:

  1. Early records of the CEC, from 1969-1986, are part of the Houston Metropolitan Research Center at the Julia Ideson Building of Houston Public Library. An index for the collection is available on Texas Archival Resources Online.
  2. Additional records of the CEC are included in the special collections at the Houston History Archives, located and managed by the University of Houston. For additional historical information about the CEC, please visit the CEC records at the Houston History Archives.

Over 40 years later, communication remains our mission. We work to foster dialogue and collaboration regarding environmental issues, and serve as an information clearinghouse for our member groups and the community at large through a variety of programs. Our service area is the 13-county region, including Austin, Brazoria, Chambers, Colorado, Fort Bend, Galveston, Harris, Liberty, Matagorda, Montgomery, Walker, Waller, and Wharton Counties.

CEC is a member of EarthShare of Texas, which supports the work of participating environmental organizations through payroll deductions.